Trucking news and briefs for Monday, June 15, 2020:
Drivers say risk of bringing COVID home is biggest virus concern
A survey of more than 1,600 truck drivers found that they have felt safe overall during the COVID-19 pandemic, but they are concerned for their own health, as well as bringing the virus home to their friends and families.
The survey conducted by Professional Driver Agency found that 72% of respondents said the biggest concern for truckers is bringing the virus home to family and friends. Of these drivers, 42% said they are staying out on the road longer instead of going home during the pandemic.
“For us, this was really the key takeaway from the survey,” said Scott Dismuke, director of operations at PDA. “While risking personal exposure to COVID-19, this is an overwhelming majority of drivers that are even more concerned about coming home and exposing family and friends.”
PDA says more than 60% of drivers said they feel safe driving during COVID-19, but nearly 45% said they were concerned about their personal health.
The biggest thing that could be done to help drivers feel safer on the road, according to 54% of respondents, is more access to personal protective equipment.
The full survey results can be seen here.
Fans now allowed at Bandit Series truck race this weekend
Following an executive order issued June 10 by Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds, fans will now be allowed to attend the Bandit Big Rig Series truck race this Saturday, June 20, at Hawkeye Downs Speedway in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.
Tickets for in-person attendance are only available at the gate on race day for $10 per person. Children 8 and under get in free. Racing begins at 6:45 p.m. Saturday.
Bandit Series organizers are also still offering a virtual ticket for $9.99, which can be purchased here, for fans to watch the event from home.
Truckers who bring their rigs to the track will receive a free race ticket and free parking, courtesy of Tegeler Wrecker and Crane.
Trucker named Highway Angel for pulling pregnant woman from burning car
Harvell “Keith” Martin, a truck driver out of Tallapoosa, Georgia, has been named a Highway Angel by the Truckload Carriers Association for rushing to free a woman trapped in a burning car.
Martin was driving along I-40 near Hickory, North Carolina, in December, with his 18-year-old son, John, riding with him. A car passed them as they were pulling out of a rest area, and a short distance ahead, they saw the same car lose control on the slick road, spin out and run off the road and into a ravine.
Martin immediately pulled over, and he and his son jumped out. They could see smoke or steam coming from the car, so Martin grabbed his fire extinguisher and ran down the embankment.
The driver’s side of the car was up against a tree, and a moment later, the vehicle was on fire. Another truck stopped and brought a fire extinguisher, but it didn’t help reduce the flames. The woman, in her late 20s, was conscious but had one leg pinned and was trapped. She was also pregnant.
Martin got into the car and was able to cut the woman out of the seat belt and pull her out from the passenger side. They then carried her a safe distance from the car and waited for paramedics.
When paramedics arrived, they checked Martin for burns, which he sustained to his arm and the back of his head.
For his willingness to help, Martin was presented with a certificate, patch, lapel pin and truck decals. His employer, JLE Industries, also received a certificate acknowledging their driver as a TCA Highway Angel. EpicVue sponsors the Highway Angel program.